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Die hard fan swims out to yacht to meet Barcelona star Lionel Messi

A very dedicated Messi fan had an experience to remember when he swam up to the Barcelona star's yacht to get a closer look at him.

Lionel Messi before the Copa America Centenario final
Lionel Messi before the Copa America Centenario final

Lionel Messi is currently unwinding in Ibiza with his family. Relaxing during his off-season break on a yacht off the coast of the exotic island, meeting a fan would’ve been the last thing he expected. However, he was in for a bit of a surprise when a hardcore fan spotted his yacht and swam up to it in order to get a closer look at his idol.

The man made his way to the yacht and then rested against its platform as the Argentinian forward and  his entourage looked on. Messi spends most of his time on the yacht, only occasionally making his way ashore to dine with his family in one of the restaurants on the island.

The man clearly looks pleased with himself, as he was able to see the footballing legend up close and in person. This was surely an experience he will never forget, and will make for an interesting story to tell his friends and family.

Leo, as he is fondly known is enjoying his break after what has been a difficult few months for him. He won the La Liga title with Barcelona yet again last season, but he suffered a heartbreaking defeat with his national side at the hands of Chile in the Copa America Centenario final. The match was goalless for 120 minutes and was then decided by a penalty shootout in which the Argentinian captain failed to score.

It was obvious that Messi was deeply upset, as he tried to cover his face with his jersey. As the shootout proceeded, he fell to his knees and put his head to the ground, his despair only deepening as his team went on to lose the game. Not long after the match, Messi shocked the footballing world by announcing his retirement from the national squad. 

"For me, the national team is over," he said. "I've done all I can. It hurts not to be a champion." Since then it has been widely speculated that the player will reconsider his decision, and may make a return to the international stage before too long.

Messi led Argentina to three major tournament finals in as many years but failed to win any of them. They faced Chile in the 2015 Copa America final as well, which was also scoreless after extra time, and they proceeded to lose the penalty shootout. Argentina played Germany in the 2014 World Cup final, which was decided by a Mario Gotze goal at the very end of extra time.  

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